Pine Forests Of The Colorado Plateau

1222 WordsMar 15, 20155 Pages
Ponderosa pine forests of the Colorado Plateau cover a large portion of the higher mesas and mountains from elevations of 6000 to approximately 8000 feet. They often form almost pure stands encompassing tens of thousands of acres at elevations above 6500 feet in the southern area. Located southwest of Flagstaff to the White Mountains of eastern Arizona, the Mogollon Rim comprises the southern edge of the Colorado Plateau in Arizona. The escarpment reaches close to 200 miles across central Arizona, with an average elevation of approximately 7000 feet. It contains the largest ponderosa pine forest in the United States. The three-needled Rocky Mountain ponderosa pine (Pinus ponderosa var. scopulorum) is the prevalent form of pine throughout the Colorado Plateau. Gambel oak (Quercus gambelii) is commonly associated with the ponderosa pine at lower elevations as well as the New Mexico locust (Robina neomexicana). At higher elevations it shares habitat with southwestern white pine (Pinus strobiformis), Rocky Mountain white fir (Abies concolor var. concolor), Rocky Mountain Douglas-fir, (Pseudotsuga menziesii var. glauca), and quaking aspen (Populus tremuloides). Understory plants which are commonly found in these forests include grasses such as mountain muhly and Arizona fescue, forbs such as lupine, as well as apache plume, buckbrush, currant, and cliffrose. a. The disturbance regime known for this ecosystem (citations please) Since the 1930s fire ecology for ponderosa

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